Representatives of the Azerbaijani and Turkish community gathered in Berlin today to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Khojaly massacre.
Dozens rallied in front of the iconic Brandenburg Gate with Turkish, Azerbaijani flags, and placards honoring the Azerbaijani victims that lost their lives on February 26, 1992.
The Khojaly massacre was one of the bloodiest incidents of the Nagorno-Karabakh war that broke out between Armenia and Azerbaijan in the late 1980s. 613 Azerbaijanis, including 116 women and 63 children, were killed. Another 487 were injured.
Slogans chanted in German at the rally included “Armenia, stop the occupation of Azerbaijani territories”, “We demand an end to the Armenian occupation”, “Genocide in Khojaly 25-26, 1992”.
The event was organized by the Association of Azerbaijani Students and Scientists (VASW) in cooperation with the Berlin Turkish Community (TGB).
Remembering the victims of the massacre, member of the Berlin-based VASW, Gurban Alakbarov said he came to the rally “because [he] really wants peace”.
“What happened in Khojaly is a [war] crime and needs to be punished. Otherwise, we can’t move forward”, he said.
Calling for Germany to recognize the Khojaly massacre, Alakbarov noted that action on Germany’s side might help to mobilize the international community.
TGB Chairman Bekir Yilmaz said “we are here to extend support to our Azerbaijani brothers,” adding that “instead of going back 100 hundred years in time and lashing out against Turkey, the international community should see that Azerbaijan’s territories are occupied by Armenia”.
Nagorno-Karabakh is a separatist Azerbaijani territory that is currently controlled by Armenian forces.